Keywhiz vs Vault: What are the differences?
Keywhiz: A system for distributing and managing secrets. Keywhiz is a secret management and distribution service that is now available for everyone. Keywhiz helps us with infrastructure secrets, including TLS certificates and keys, GPG keyrings, symmetric keys, database credentials, API tokens, and SSH keys for external services — and even some non-secrets like TLS trust stores. Automation with Keywhiz allows us to seamlessly distribute and generate the necessary secrets for our services, which provides a consistent and secure environment, and ultimately helps us ship faster; Vault: Secure, store, and tightly control access to tokens, passwords, certificates, API keys, and other secrets in modern computing. Vault is a tool for securely accessing secrets. A secret is anything that you want to tightly control access to, such as API keys, passwords, certificates, and more. Vault provides a unified interface to any secret, while providing tight access control and recording a detailed audit log.
Keywhiz and Vault can be primarily classified as "Secrets Management" tools.
Some of the features offered by Keywhiz are:
- Keywhiz Server provides JSON APIs for accessing and managing secrets. It is written in Java and based on Dropwizard.
- KeywhizFs is a FUSE-based file system, providing secrets as if they are files in a directory. Transparently, secrets are retrieved from a Keywhiz Server using mTLS with a client certificate.
- Presenting secrets as files makes Keywhiz compatible with nearly all software. Outside of Keywhiz administration, consumers of secrets only have to know how to read a file.
On the other hand, Vault provides the following key features:
- Secure Secret Storage: Arbitrary key/value secrets can be stored in Vault. Vault encrypts these secrets prior to writing them to persistent storage, so gaining access to the raw storage isn't enough to access your secrets. Vault can write to disk, Consul, and more.
- Dynamic Secrets: Vault can generate secrets on-demand for some systems, such as AWS or SQL databases. For example, when an application needs to access an S3 bucket, it asks Vault for credentials, and Vault will generate an AWS keypair with valid permissions on demand. After creating these dynamic secrets, Vault will also automatically revoke them after the lease is up.
- Data Encryption: Vault can encrypt and decrypt data without storing it. This allows security teams to define encryption parameters and developers to store encrypted data in a location such as SQL without having to design their own encryption methods.
Keywhiz and Vault are both open source tools. Vault with 12.8K GitHub stars and 1.93K forks on GitHub appears to be more popular than Keywhiz with 2.09K GitHub stars and 166 GitHub forks.
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